Sometimes the word tendril seems to have dark overtones, but Tendril is taking a sunny disposition on community solar power. The company unveiled the Tendril Community Solar Solution, a new platform to help utilities speed development of community solar projects and make them personal for their customers. The company unveiled the new service at the Edison Electric Institute’s Annual Convention today, June 8.
“Some may see solar as a threat to the utility business model,” said Adrian Tuck, CEO of Tendril. “However, forward-thinking utilities don’t see it that way. They see that community solar represents a tremendous opportunity—utilities can leverage their unique understanding of consumers and a low cost of capital to deliver solar in a way that enhances their business and builds the foundation for stronger relationships. Tendril’s ESM [i.e., energy services management products] enables utilities to win in solar.”The new services help utilities engage potential community solar customers and lead both the consumers and the utility through the sales process and keeps the buyers engaged after the sale is complete and the system is operating.
“Whereas residential solar used to be an impenetrable market for utilities, it is now not only an energy source utilities can tap, but also an engaging service they can market and sell to a customer-base that has been underserved by rooftop solar providers,” Tendril said. The company’s community ESM services are targeting those throughout the country who may want solar power but aren’t able to install it because their homes might not be able to support it, or they live in condos or apartments where they can’t install solar panels. That’s where community solar comes in.
“People want choices in their energy supply; they want solar,” said Julia Hamm, CEO of the Solar Electric power Association. “From careful siting at key locations on the grid to providing local jobs, we see huge benefits in [community solar] projects.”
Tendril contended that thus far utilities haven’t been able to personalize community solar programs in a way that’s attractive to consumers. It said its platform harnesses big data and analytics to help utilities facilitate the marketing and engagement functions.Tweet